'We have not given up hope': Family of missing tourist
Marie Ostbo went missing on the beach in Sedgefield
The father of a Norwegian student who went missing on the beach in Sedgefield fears that she may have been attacked - but he is hopeful she will be found.
Marie Ostbo‚ 21‚ arrived in the Garden Route town with a group of international student tourists on Wednesday.
She disappeared on Wednesday evening after being seen on the beach about 100 metres away from the backpacker’s lodge where the students were staying.
Her father‚ Atle Ostbo‚ told Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet: “We have not given up hope.”
Despite an extensive search‚ only a cellphone‚ a hat and shoes belonging to Marie have so far been found.
Ostbo told the newspaper that the group of students had gone for a walk in the early evening but returned to the backpacker lodge when the weather turned bad. Marie‚ however‚ stayed to take photographs with a new camera she had bought for the trip.
The group only realised about 30 minutes later when they wanted to go out for dinner that she was not inside yet. The group immediately alerted authorities when they could not find her outside.
"I think she may have been attacked because she would never put away shoes‚ caps and mobile phones on the beach and bathe with the camera she just bought‚” said her father.
Marie was taking a break from her studies in political science in Toulouse‚ France.
The National Sea Rescue Institute and other authorities have been searching for her‚ but had so far been unsuccessful.